Real People Real Results: Super Mum Teresa Pracillo
Friday, October 2016
How getting fit helped Teresa care for her disabled daughter, plus why outdoor personal training works for mums.
Super mum Teresa Pracillo is not the only one reaping the rewards of her new found fitness. Her daughter Kayla, 8, is too. Kayla has a rare neurological disorder called Rett Syndrome, and Teresa says by losing weight and gaining strength she is better able to care for her daughter.
Simone Jones, personal trainer from Step into Life Morley, WA, says Teresa has a fighting spirit (and strength) that knocks you off your feet. “No matter how complicated her life is or what challenges are thrown her way, Teresa still turns up to her sessions – sometimes twice a day – and pushes herself to her absolutely max.”
It’s no surprise this super mum’s nick-name is Pocket Rocket. Here Teresa shares her fitness journey.
Why did you join Step into Life Morley?
After doing a charity 4km walk with my daughter in May 2013, I realised how unfit I was and not happy with the way I looked. A few days later I found a Step into Life flyer in my letterbox and rang trainer Simone Jones, who encouraged me to try it out.
How often do you train now, and what do you love most about it?
I train four days a week. Foremost I love the Step into Life trainers. Simone and Eva keep me motivated. I also love training outdoors, the variety of the classes, fresh air, friendships and the laughs along the way. The constant motivation, support and kindness is exceptional.
Are you happy to share a little about Kayla’s diagnosis with Rett Syndrome and how keeping fit helps in your caring for her?
Rett Syndrome doesn’t define Kayla, but is the reason she is unable to walk, non verbal and requires help and care for all aspects of her life. When I started Step into Life Morley (with the extra kilos I was carrying) I had a lot of lower back pain and weak core strength. Joining Step into Life Morley has improved this and ultimately assisted me with Kayla’s care. Also, being outdoors with a fantastic group of people has improved my mental outlook and toughness.
What helps keep you motivated to train, even when challenges might be thrown your way?
My personal goal of continuing to keep fit and knowing how far I have come since the Step into Life journey began is my motivation. I would never have thought I could run a half marathon. Often when I am running, I think of my daughter Kayla and in my head I say: “I am running for her”.
Having trainers like Simone and Eva who keep pushing me when they know I can be pushed a bit further also motivates me. But I don’t need motivation to attend classes because the Step into Life model is not “just come and do your class and go home”, it is so much more. After three years of being a member, I am still here and never make excuses for not attending. When fitness is not a chore, you know you’re on a winner.
Why is your nick name Pocket Rocket?!
I love running, but I secretly love sprinting. It gets the heart rate up and I see results when I am doing interval training.
Would you recommend group outdoor personal training to other mums, and why?
Many mums have busy schedules and it’s easy not to take time out or do something that will make us feel better about ourselves. Step into Life is the perfect way to connect with other mums who are generally feeling the same way about their fitness. All the mums at Step into Life Morley encourage each other and we have become great fitness friends. Best of all we always have a laugh while getting fit. I recommend any mum join Step into Life – the hardest part is getting to your first session.
What are your current fitness goals?
I would still like to lose another two or three kilos and run the half marathon in under two hours. There is a lot of talk about me doing a marathon in 2017, maybe this could be a goal!
Interview by Harriet Edmund